So what to do for this week’s Unplugged Project theme: scissors? We could try a little Modular Kirigami, or some traditional Kirigami. In fact why not create an exact 3D miniature replica of our town using only one sheet of paper and some scissors!! Well…maybe not. But it was a fun thought to consider.
Instead we decided to tackle something that I remembered from my childhood, and which seemed a bit more manageable in scope – silhouettes. As is often the case with these Unplugged Projects, there was an evolution: the silhouettes became stick puppets, which led to a puppet show and even a shadow puppet show!
Here are the materials: desk lamp, white paper, masking tape, pencil, glue stick, dark colored construction paper and, of course, scissors.
We set ourselves up in the guest room which has heavy velvet curtains that can make the room quite dark, even in the daytime. We put out a small chair parallel to a blank wall. We then set the lamp on a table as far away from the chair as possible (the farther away the lamp is, the smaller the shadow will be and you want the whole head to be able to fit on one piece of paper). My oldest daughter sat down and I masking-taped some paper to the wall where her shadow fell.
I traced around the outline. I repeated the process with my 5 year-old son, but not my 2 year-old since I knew she wouldn’t sit still long enough.
The kids got stuffed animals and made their own silhouettes of them:
Next we sat at the kitchen table and glued our white paper outlines to pieces of dark construction paper:
Then we carefully cut along the pencil markings:
Once it was cut out, all we had to do was flip the whole thing over to see a lovely dark silhouette! I glued the children’s black silhouettes to some white poster board and experimented with framing. I think I shall have to redo my son’s though, since his haircut makes him look a bit like a light bulb, or a Saturday Night Live conehead (he’s on the left, below).
The children had the brilliant idea of coloring the white sides of their silhouettes and attaching craft sticks to make stick puppets:
I was then presented with a puppet show over the arm of the sofa:
Their next inspiration was to try a shadow puppet show in the guest room using our desk lamp.
One simple project snowballed, and turned into an afternoon of fun!
TIP: I would eventually really like to make a small (4″x 6″ or 5″x 7″) silhouette of each my three children to put, matted, together in one frame. Since I don’t have a lamp powerful enough or a room large enough to be able to make silhouettes that small, I plan on reducing my tracings using a photocopier and then will follow the same simple procedure.
If you joined us for the scissors project, thank you and please link to your post in Mr. Linky. For those of you who have chosen to turn off all those screens for Turn-Off Week (whether you are participating in the TV-Turnoff Blog Challenge or not), I shall expect you to produce true masterpieces for next week’s Unplugged Project (lots of free time, right??)!
In honor of Spring, next week’s Unplugged Project theme will be:
Remember, the theme is only a starting point. If you can’t think of anything directly bird-related, then what is associated with birds? Feathers, nests, eggs…any of those things “count!” Be as creative as you want to!